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Most organic gardeners don’t try to eliminate pests entirely, but instead aim to keep pest populations below damaging levels. By doing this, they’re able to attract natural predators, which help kill pests.

Predators include:

  • spiders
  • beneficial insects, such as ladybug, green lacewing, praying mantis, and certain wasps
  • birds
  • toads
  • lizards
  • certain snakes

It’s worth the effort to gain basic ID skills, so you know if a bug or other predator is a friend or foe.

To promote ecological diversity in your garden, fill it with a wide variety of plants, including flowers and herbs, which create habitat for beneficial insects, and avoid planting large blocks of the same crop, which offer an easy target for pests.

In addition to including different plants in your garden, allow some leafy vegetable crops, including broccoli, lettuce, and greens, to flower. Many beneficial insects can’t resist the blossoms these crops offer.

Close up of a Ladybug on a Leaf
Close up of a ladybug on a leaf.

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